THE STORY OF MAI LAM
Without any formal training Mai has seamlessly blended the traditional with the modern, creating uniquely colourful designs that are slowly gaining her international recognition. Inadvertently showcasing the splendour that is Vietnam to the world, a country whose history is no less colourful!
Mai was born into a middle class family in Vietnam; growing up rebellious and free. One of the 'boys' she was adept at climbing trees and mastering her slingshot. Designing was the last thing on her mind. This ideal childhood was shattered by the U.S. war as it is known in Vietnam; having a profound impact on the way she viewed her existence and how precious life truly is. So in 1977, Mai her older sister and 4 children left Vietnam in search of a more secure life in Australia. Upon arriving she quickly realised the luxuries she was once accustomed to back home she could no longer afford, so what she couldn't afford she made, a new talent discovered!
After 20 years of family success in Australia, Mai her husband Henry and 5 children were drawn to their roots in Vietnam; it was time to give back to a country now entering into a very exciting new phase! It was her arrival back in Vietnam that saw the beginning of MAI'S; her eponymous brand featuring trademark multi-dimensional embroidery; natural dyes, embellishments with precious stones and the use of local fabrics.
Initially Mai's designs were sold from her workshop and design studio in District 10, quickly demand became overwhelming and a larger space was needed, thus giving birth to MAI'S, her flagship store at the historic Hotel Continental. Mai's quickly established itself as a favourite among tourists and locals not only for its unique garments but also for its inimitable gallery style use of the space.